Insurer to analyse drivers’ Facebook profiles

A man driving a car with his hand on the wheel

An insurance company is to analyse the personalities of first-time drivers by checking their Facebook profiles.

Under the optional scheme, Admiral said it will use an algorithm to examine social media pages to determine whether prospective customers would be careful drivers.

The firm said it would consider a “snapshot” of a customer’s social media page while it calculates a quote.

Writing style and the use of calendars or accounting apps will be considered in the analysis, The Times reported.

The amount of information shared with the insurer is optional, but Admiral said: “What we have access to will impact how we understand and calculate safety.”

On its website, the firm added: “New drivers are often quoted much higher insurance premiums as they have little driving history, zero no claims bonus and are viewed as ‘high risk’.

“But we want to help make sure safe drivers aren’t penalised and get the best price possible.

“To do this, we’ll look at your Facebook profile to help us get a better understanding of the type of driver you are.”

The firm claims those who opt-in could receive a discount of up to 15%.

Renate Samson, the chief executive of Big Brother Watch, described the scheme as “terrifying”.

“Kids are going to be handing over information with no real knowledge about how it is going to be used,” she told The Times.

“How can you really tell if someone is a good or bad driver based on your Facebook page?”

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